S Arabia sentences woman to 34 years in jail over Twitter use

AFP
August 18, 2022

RIYADH: A Saudi court has sentenced a woman to 34 years in prison over her Twitter activity, according to court documents seen by AFP on Wednesday.The sentence issued against Salma al-Shehab, for...

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RIYADH: A Saudi court has sentenced a woman to 34 years in prison over her Twitter activity, according to court documents seen by AFP on Wednesday.

The sentence issued against Salma al-Shehab, for aiding dissidents seeking to "disrupt public order" in the kingdom, was handed down by the Saudi appeals court on August 9, the documents showed.

Shehab, a PhD candidate at Britain’s University of Leeds and a mother of two, was also banned from travelling abroad for a further 34 years as part of the sentence. The sentence comes amid a crackdown on rights activists in the oil-rich Gulf state, many of whom have been slapped with jail sentences and travel bans.

Shehab was arrested in Saudi Arabia in January 2021 while she was on holiday from her studies in the United Kingdom. The 34-year-old had initially been given a six-year sentence in June, including three years that were suspended and a travel ban of the same length, before the appeals court toughened the sentence this month. Her latest sentence can be appealed within 30 days at the kingdom’s supreme court, according to the court documents.



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